Ariadne's Thread came from the need to tell stories of the amazing women in my family. All of them, born in Russia before the 1917 Revolution, settled in France where they had to adapt to a life radically different from what they had kwn. When their world collapsed, they could either collapse with it, or reinvent themselves. These women taught me the art of survival: resilience in adversity, self-reliance, frugality. Through them - my grandmother, my aunts, my mother - I learned lessons which are t taught in school, values which have sustained me throughout my life. These women's down-to-earth values have new relevance today, in a world preoccupied by appearances and material gain. By looking at my family's collective past, I see clues for a better future. If we want a better world, we could do worse than turn to a few old-fashioned values and work at putting them into practice. The book is a tribute to the precious heritage I received from people who lived and loved fully, and for whom everyday life was a celebration. I hope they will inspire many.